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5sfe water in engine :(

46815 Views 329 Replies 21 Participants Last post by  doozergreengrass
I thought I had problems with the cooling system on my 5sfe. Replaced the radiator cap and now have water in the engine (there is a white goo on the inside of the oil filler cap). No water is left in the overflow and the radiator itself is very low.

So, how do I tell if its the head or the head gasket?

My car warranty ran out 2 days ago - 14/10/2010. F**k!!!!!!!!!!

What to do from here?

Any help much appreciated, cheers :thumbsup:
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The rubber gasket on the reservoir? Is this one under the reservoir cap? There were lots of those on Detroit reservoirs, but I don't think they mattered.

The important thing you need to make sure is that the over flow tube from the radiator neck basically forms a continuous, leak-free path into the coolant inside the reservoir. This way when the engine cools, the radiator doesn't suck air back but it sucks the coolant in the reservoir.

This means that the rubber hose connections (to the radiator neck, reservoir) should NOT leak. Use a clamp (worm-gear or spring) carefully if you need so you don't crack the plastic.

If your engine cools down and the air pocket grows then there is a leak somewhere you need to find and fix. Otherwise you'll be working on the water pump and head gasket among the things.

Ok. Well flushed the cooling system twice and replaced with fresh coolant. Top rad. hose replaced, overflow reservoirreplaced (2nd hand). Have done 200 km (125 miles) and there appears to be no buttery substance on the oil cap - so far. The car is running smooth on start-up.

Can anyone plz explain to me how important the rubber gasket on the overflow reservoir is? The one that was prevously in there was very perished so I took it out and replaced with a different one. The reason i'm asking is i've put a different reservoir in. But the level on the radiator has dropped a little (still covering fins inside radiator) and I would've expected this to pull the coolant from the reservoir to keep the radiator full. Should the radiator be filled right to the top always - or just covering the fins?

Thanks =)
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This reservoir cap gasket only prevents the evaporated coolant from condensing on the cap and seeping out from under the cap. The reservoir is vented anyway, so the purpose is more cosmetic than functional. But if it gives you an annoying seepage problem then you may need to get a new reservoir (unless they sell only the gasket, or you cut your own using a sheet stock from a parts store).

As far as the themostat housing gasket, the rubber gasket around the thermostat achieves the same thing. It's a superior design to the old "paper gasket" type, which you need to coat on both sides using a coolant-safe RTV (like the Permatex Water Pump and Themostat RTV) anyway.

A properly installed thermostat with a new rubber gasket means there should be no leaks from the housing.

Yes, the radiator should be filled to the neck (never remove cap when hot). The rad cap with a spring loaded return valve does a better job and is preferred (if you can find them for the I4). However, the plastic return valves stink, and you may have more air in the system than necessary. That's why extended coolants should never be used with these cheap plastic return valve rad caps.

Thanks. Yes the one under the reservoir cap is what I meant...btw, is there suppossed to be a gasket in between the thermostat housing? (not the rubber gasket that goes around the thermostat itself, the paper ones). There was never one there so I never put one. Does it really matter?

If your engine cools down and the air pocket grows then there is a leak somewhere you need to find and fix.

Are you saying the radiator should be filled to its neck? When does the coolant shift from reservoir to radiator, during operation or after engine is stopped and starts to cool?
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Early 5SFEs came with graphite HG, but MLS is available from Victor Reinz.
I'd go with MLS but the shop needs to finish the surface as mentioned. These work better on bi-metal engines (aluminum cylinder head and iron block). They head-block movement is more than all-alum engines. The graphites already sucked on early 1MZs (all alum).

Here is an example of a VICTOR REINZ MLS HG set $98 USD:

$41.79 MLS head gasket only:

$39.79 graphite head gasket only:

Thanks Fortified. Just called the engineering place that'll be carrying out the work they said use the graphite one. I just called ACL and they confirmed the Monotorque is a paper/steel composite. Guess i'll get the graphite one as it is the same price.:thumbsup: And yes will definitely buy new head bolts :D
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That's the triple-square bit (3x4 = 12 points), commonly used on European cars. Find them at parts stores here in the US, up to XZN12 (12mm) I think.

See also:

i think (never saw those bolts or can't remember the looks/type/size) it may require a fancy socket like the one guys are describing here in Previa forum:

bi-hex socket? 12 point i think, not sure about size, they mention either 12 or 14mm but it doesn't make much sense to me. I would check with local shop that does engine head machining, they should know or call the dealer and try getting this info out of the Parts Counter guy specifically for your model (by VIN)... just tell them you are calling from Joe Schmoe Shop and need to know what tool is required for head removal on your customer's car ... ;)

does this look familiar?
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Here is an article that may help:

You need to get a small bolt to lock the pre-tensioned cam gears. Follow Haynes or other repair manuals. Check the free one on Autozone too.

I'm not sure about reusing the old hardened washers. Fel-Pro give you new ones with their kit. I guess the shop expected you to reuse the old ones? The chamfered side should face up. The washers will prevent the head bolts from digging into the soft alum cylinder head so they're a must on these cylinder heads.

Those torque specs are for Gen 3+, but do triple check.

Yes, replace all oil seals, o-rings and gaskets that you can find while in there. New water pump and thermostat too, etc etc. Make sure you lube the seals with assembly lube so they don't start dry. On the cams and everything that moves you remove.

Have got everything back yesterday, so much cleaner than when it came off! The cam shafts have been reinstalled with the buckets in the correct position, at tdc. But they have to come out to get the head bolted down. I'm not entirely sure how to get the cam aligned up again after i take them out.The valve clearances are already set. Do cam buckets have to be removed or just loosened to allow the head bolts in?

How do I remove/replace crank seal, and oil pump seal? Once these two seals are replaced the reconstuction can begin. I've already removed the oil pump bolts, but just want to know if the oil pump would need pryed loose before I break something.

I've got the stretchy kinda head bolts. Was instructed by the engineering shop that carried out the work to torque to 36 FLb (49NM) + 90 degrees. Which makes perfect sense, just want another opinion on that! Also, the old head bolts had washers but these don't. Whats the story?

Cheers! =)
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Maybe Oz productions are a little different than those for the US market. Dunno. Around here Gen 3 up to 96 have them. Toyota cut cost in Gen 4, took them out since 97. And yes, Gen4+ US Camrys are all sludge makers until Toyota changed the head design with the 2.5L. Maybe they won't sludge up now with the 2.5L, dunno.

So both of your engines are Gen 3, I wonder if they're closer to Japanese spec than US spec (I think more stringent emissions requirements). Both should be 5SFE:

Just get a new PCV and grommet. Be careful the grommet is usually brittle and can break and fall into the valve cover. So use a hook tool and pliers to help and work slowly.

My vehicle is a 1995 Camry 2.2 SXV10. Our other Camry is a 1993 2.2 SDV10. The only difference I can see visually between the two engines is the 93 has the oil cooler under the oil filter. The 93 has very nice clean oil after changes but not so the 95. Within 1000km its already pretty dark. When I removed the valve cover I was blown away but the amount of s**t on it.

So can anyone verify which the 95's engine is? I know its 3rd Gen but is there a sub reference?

Also, if this "sludge" is down in the block, how best to flush it out without causing damage to new cylinder head? I'm just reading up on the sludge problems now, though noone has mentioned 95 models i'm pretty sure my 95 has a problem. Should I be replacing the old pcv with a new one? any method to check old pcv is operating correct?
Other methods include Auto-RX (not sure if it's avail in Oz). Or use a High Mileage motor oil with more detergents.

Thanks. How much diesel did you pour in and how long did you let it soak? Did you have to remove oil pan and clear debris from the (internal oil filter forgot what its called lol). Did you pour the diesel in thru the oil return holes on the block?

Would anyone else recommend/warn against this procedure?

All the work is already done, I mean just to bolt the head down, and change out the oil pump and crank seals/gaskets.
No need to touch the buckets. The buckets only sit on valves/springs. The valve clearances are set by using shims that sit on the buckets. Taking off the cam won't affect them. However, you might want to go through with the feeler gauges and double check them. At least you know what the shop set them to. Log them in case you need to check and compare later.

Make sure you remove the service bolt after install. And always watch spring action so you don't catch your fingers.

I watched the youtube vid about torquing the cylinder head bolts, its more the cam timing i'm worried about. If someone could put my mind at ease i'm sure I can complete the job on my own. Thing is, i'm sure the engineers told me NOT to remove the buckets completely, how can this be?

Anyways, i'm thinking the cams must be completly removed to bolt head on. And I can see the markings on the buckets (E1, I1 etc) as to where the buckets go back. Will removing the camshafts affect any already set valve clearances?

For moderate torques use at least 3 stages. Alternatively you can lightly hand tighten (~5-7 lb another chance to feel any irregularity), then 12-24-36. I like to keep the last stage 10 lb/ft away from the previous.

Lightly coat the head bolts with engine oil but not dripping and make sure the bolt holes are clean without debris.

The torque-angle gauge is about $10 USD.

but it's fine to throw a stage or two in there that is LOWER than 36ft/lb (such as 10ft/lb, 20ft/lb, 36ft/lb) just to make sure you are evenly approaching the final torque.
First, in the picture below, which gasket goes where? I know one must be for camshaft - which one is the OIL SEAL LIP? and how does it face into the number one bearing cap?
The "lip seal" on the left, in the first picture is the back side. The back side faces the engine. It deflects oil back into the engine. The front side has letters and numbers. This front side faces out, on the timing belt side. You should use some assembly lube (~$5 in parts stores) in the lip area and on the cam shaft during installation. Otherwise a dry start will damage the seal. Also install carefully so the garter spring doesn't pop out and the seal sits properly on the cam.

Which is the open gasket with a metal spring running round the outside and what is that one for? Is that the crank gasket?
Not sure what you mean. Do you mean the garter spring, in the seal on the left below? This is on the inside.

In the next picture, what is the green gasket with the silver casing for? What are the 2 small paper gasket, the single black rubber oring, and the 2 copper washers for? I just found one on a parts sight - exhaust flange gasket right - (the green one)?
Exhaust pipe flange gasket.

The single o-ring and a flat one (not sure which) should be for the water outlet pipes. The other flat one is for oil pick up tube.

Not sure if the copper gaskets are for the fuel rail?

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Also check this thread for TN tool innovation:

First of all - does the torque on the crank shaft bolt have anything to do with the holding pressure of the crank seal itself?

2nd - I removed the old seal, and greased up the new one. Then I prepared for a battle of "push the new seal on", but it just slid on. That seems really odd to me, I was expecting a hell of a fight so it'd be on there all snug and tight. So, should the new seal slide on so easily?
The torque on the crank bolt shouldn't have anything to do with the seal itself. The seal has a metal outer flange (under the rubber), and it should be snug and even tight fit. If yours slide out easily then it's not the correct seal. And that's probably the reason for the leak. What aftermarket brand was it? I use Fel-Pros on a variety of makes I help work on and no problems. Like Fenixus suggested, when in doubt, go OEM. And then you can blame Toyota. :lol:

3rd - While the engine is running, should I expect new gasket smoke to occur as well as an odour? (seems to be the exhaust outlet gasket smoking a bit)
No, the exhaust manifold gasket (flat multilayer steel) or the exhaust flange gasket (round) should not leak and let out exhaust odor.

4th - can a timing problem cause oil to leak (i'm pretty sure the timing is ok though)
(and what and where does the smaller round black gasket on the inset of this previous picture go?)
No. The seal alone needs to stop the oil leak unless you have a real crankcase pressure problem.

The round lip seal next to the pump o-ring is the oil pump shaft seal. Installed similarly as cam and crank seals. But you need a holder to remove the pump pulley (like you do with the cam pulley).

5th!!!! Therefore, all thats really left down here to replace is the oil pump GASKET huh - this one (and what and where does the smaller gasket on the inset of this picture go)
The small gasket is the oil pickup tube gasket.
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BTW, on a 5SFE, this is the crank seal I'd use:
Fel-pro gives you the pump-to-block gasket/gasket, the oil pump o-ring, and the crank seal for $5.55+shipping. (TCS45920)

This is the cam seal I'd use:
TCS45641, $3.66+shipping
I was just pointing out other causes of oil leaks, but I'm not saying crankcase pressure is the case here. At least I don't think it's the case. Excessive blow by and plugged PCV system are some. But I think we're digressing here.

I think the primary reason for the leak is the loose crank seal installed. The other things you mentioned shouldn't cause the oil leak you mentioned. And as long as you're not pouring old oil with sand and grit in there (causing wear), you should be fine. Some lesser shops recycle coolant and who knows even ATF.

80 lbs should be what you need for a 5SFE crank pulley bolt. :D No problems there.

BTW, are there scratches on the crank shaft or bore where the seal goes?

My torque wrench max is 80ft lb! Anyways... JohnGD - what other kind of crankcase pressure problem could I have, would remaining grease/water from hg leak, and grease from cam gears when I installed them, cause a blockage?

The funny thing is I knew there was always a leak but never knew where from. It really looks like the crank seal but what are the other possibilities? The leak is really bad - probably a cup/250ml over 5 mins. Is the oil pump GASKET an easy one to do?

I'm just trying to track down the brank of the crank gasket I installed.

Also I should note, atm whenever i'm checking/running the engine i'm doing so with the power steering and a/c compressor belts detached - any chance this is causing the oil leak?! The oil is the old oil that was previously in it, because for this very reason (in case of a leak) I didn't want to be pouring $ down the gurgler so to speak. Could this old oil cause any problem?
I re-read this section again. The crank seal has a hidden metal flange under the rubber. This allows the seal to be held rigid in the bore and seals the outside of the seal to the bore. The inside "lip seal", with a garter spring behind it, is what conforms and seals the rotating crankshaft. You may see some serrated lines on there. They help divert oil splashes back into the engine. That surface is what contacts the crankshaft.

The spring side faces toward the engine. You see the lettering on the flat side (faces out). During the install, the seal contact surface and the crankshaft get a thin coat of (I use) assembly lube. This helps the seal glide and prevents dry starts from burning up the seal and causing leaks. When installed properly the spring remains on the seal and won't pop off. If the spring popped off it will leak.

However, the seal should slide easily on the crankshaft until you get to the bore. That's where you need a socket or PVC pipe to help seat it. Hope this clarifies it a bit.

2nd - I removed the old seal, and greased up the new one. Then I prepared for a battle of "push the new seal on", but it just slid on. That seems really odd to me, I was expecting a hell of a fight so it'd be on there all snug and tight. So, should the new seal slide on so easily?
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Yes, the difficulty in pushing the seal into the bore by hand and then just leaving it there was the reason for the leaks. A socket or PVC pipe should work fine. The flat surface of the seal should be just below the slight bevel of the bore, but flat with the top surface usually is fine too. Just don't over push it to the point of deforming the metal flange.

In the US Haynes manual provides good steps for the home mechanic to do these type of work. Haynes sometimes is a bit too general as far as model-years go. But it adds a lot of hints for the home mechanic. Autozone also has free online guides that you should be able to access (with registration) from Oz. These should help you avoid some of the problems.

Bingo! I think yr onto something there, I simply slid the seal in until it stopped and thought that was it. It does need to be 'driven' in further then with that pipe attachment posted in the other thread?

Actually, just realised that bit above is for seating the cam seal. Will it work for the crank seal or is it too small? I don't think its the cam seal thats leaking, rather the crank seal.
Right, the "socket or PVC pipe" is a bit too generic. A socket won't fit the crank. My bad.

In the US we have Home Depot and Lowes where you can bring the seals and find a PVC pipe or metal electrical conduits (flanged, so they won't cut into the seals) that fit at very low costs (a few dollars).

BTW, it's not just the oil pump rotor that can have a groove worn into it. An old seal can do that. The same thing can happen to cam- and crankshafts. That's why a "complete" timing job always require new seals.

yeah, that was for the cam seal. not sure what you can use for crank ... can't quite imagine using a socket (would need to be very deep), but a proper diameter of PVC pipe should definitely work as posted above.
Is that "repair sleeve" for the pump shaft? If so the sleeve should do. It's clearly common on cam/cranks. If not it's an entire assembly you need. The rotor clearance has to be in spec, so these may be select-fit parts. Check with your local Toyota to see if they sell only the rotor/shaft.

This is the oil pump rotor: I think its grooved, but not supposed to be. See the thin black line all the way around at the nut end, about where the metal spring on the gasket would sit.

Replace rotor? Or, just put seal? (the old seal is noticably worn I can see light between it and the rotor if held correctly). If I can't replace the rotor and seal without a complete new pump, should I be looking for one of these sleves: (thanks for link gyjoe)

I feel I am getting very close to solving this. fingers crossed......
You can ask an engine machine shop in Oz. They may be able to help fit a sleeve on there affordably.

Yes is that sleeve pictured specifically for the oil pump rotor? Or should I take it and have it fitted?
hehe the groove was "precision-machined" by the garter spring probably.

And yes, the mark on the driven-rotor is facing the pump body. Good.

K so another dealer has it for $60, what a difference in price! Gonna pick up in few hours along with the seal. By tonight i'll know if i've solved my problem or not :)

Problem now is, if the engine is running all good, i'm gonna have extra pressure on my already slipping clutch *sigh* it never ends.....
The mark is facing toward the pump body, not the block. You're fine. So where is it leaking from now? Not under the timing cover right?

I think i've installed it with the mark on the driven-rotor facing outwards! Should I go back in and change it so the "^" is facing the engine on the driven rotor?

Well, i've taken it for a drive, there is still a small leak which is now a drop rather than a gush...but other than that I think its ok. I'll probably get to the oil pan and that oil oil seal (behind the oil pump housing) within a few months. But for now i'm just happy to have wheels again.

Anything I should consider while driving for the first few hundred km's?

Thanks for all the help everyone, will have a few coldies for you all tonight (new years eve here). All the best TN'ers, will keep this post updated if anything turns to shit (hoping not lol.....).
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